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Navy & Marine Corps Medical News 


August 11, 2000 

Navy and Marine Corps Medical News (MEDNEWS) is a weekly 
compendium of news and information contributed by commands 
throughout the Navy medical department. Information contained 
in MEDNEWS stories is not necessarily endorsed by Navy Bureau of 
Medicine and Surgery (BUMED) , nor should it be considered 
official Navy policy. 

BUMED distributes MEDNEWS to Sailors and Marines, their 
families, civilian employees and retired Navy and Marine Corps 
families. Further distribution is highly encouraged. 

Stories in MEDNEWS use these abbreviations after a Navy 
medical professional's name to show affiliation: MC - Medical 
Corps (physician); DC - Dental Corps; NC - Nurse Corps; MSC - 
Medical Service Corps (clinicians, researchers and 
administrative managers) . Hospital Corpsmen (HM) and Dental 
Technician (DT) designators are placed in front of their names. 


Contents for this week's MEDNEWS: 

- Naval Dental Center Southwest personnel give 'a hand up' 

- New clinic commissioned 

- Great Lakes nurse brings pet therapy to patients 

- Virtual Naval Hospital receives award 

- Navy family medicine program graduates ten, welcomes six 

- TRICARE question and answer 

- Anthrax question and answer 

- Healthwatch: Getting the upper hand on "snack attacks" 


Stories : 

Headline: Naval Dental Center Southwest personnel give 'a hand 
up ' 

Sailors from around San Diego volunteered their time to 'Give 
a Hand Up not a Hand Out' to homeless veterans at this year's 
13th annual National Stand Down held July 21-23. This included 
more than 60 people from Naval Dental Center Southwest who 
volunteered their time and dental services to the veterans. 

Dental services were provided on board two state-of-the-art 
Mobile Dental Units. This marked the seventh year in a row that 
the Naval Dental Center has deployed the Mobile Dental Units in 
support of Stand Down. 

Rear Adm. (select) Dennis Woofter, DC, commanding officer of 
Naval Dental Center Southwest, and Capt . Joseph C. Whitt, DC, 
Director of Clinical Services, visited the site on Saturday 

morning. They were very impressed with the entire operation and 
that so many people had volunteered their time on a weekend to 
help those less fortunate. 

"I am happy to volunteer my time to give something back to 
the people who really need it," said DT2 Pedro Perales, LPO of 
the Fleet Liaison Department. 

The Vietnam veterans of San Diego initiated Stand Down in 
1988 with help from local military, veterans' organizations, 
governmental support agencies and civic groups. The concept was 
picked up by other cities in 1990 and, last year, was replicated 
in 120 cities nationwide. Participants in Stand Down receive 
food, clothing, shelter and counseling for three days in a 
"safe" environment. It was an opportunity for them and their 
families to regain their self-respect and connect with services 
that can help them on the road to recovery and off the streets. 
More than 500 homeless veterans received assistance during this 
year's Stand Down. 


Headline: New clinic commissioned 

QUANTICO, Va. - The new Naval Medical and Dental Clinic at 
Marine Corps Base Quantico was commissioned July 25 during a 
dedication ceremony that took place in front of the new $19.2 
million clinic. 

The new clinic will replace the existing 61-year-old facili 
and consolidate medical and dental services under one roof. The 
grand opening for the 102,000 square foot building will take 
place August 14. 

The new clinic features a drive-up pharmacy window, 
transitional rooms for clinicians and administrative support 
personnel, and additional technologically advanced diagnostic 
equipment. The new clinic will continue the tradition of 
providing outstanding health care to Marines, Sailors, their 
families, and other eligible beneficiaries at Quantico, the 
Crossroads of the Marine Corps. 


Headline: Great Lakes nurse brings pet therapy to patients 
By Lt . Youssef H. Aboul-Enein, MSC, Naval Hospital PAO 

GREAT LAKES, 111. - Dealing with 56,000 recruits a year, 
Great Lakes Naval Hospital must care for a small percentage of 
recruits who suffer from psychological stress brought about by 
separation from home, a new environment and new 
responsibilities. For most, a few days of recuperation in the 
hospital and counseling enables the recruit to return to 
training . 

To assist in the recovery of patients, Lt . David Senello, N 
researched and proposed the pet therapy program, which is now 
fully operational. Now dogs, cats and birds make rounds to 
bring joy and physiological well-being to children, recruits and 
family members at Naval Hospital Great Lakes . 

"Pet therapy is known by many different names including 
animal assisted therapy and human-animal bonding," said Capt . 
Deborah Gray, NC, director for nursing services. "Since 1942 

when it was first introduced, this form of treatment has been 
proven a successful adjunct to traditional medical, nursing and 
physiological interventions and helps facilitate the health and 
well-being of patients, families, and staff." 

"A request for pet therapy is initiated by a consult written 
by a medical officer," said Senello. The consult ensures that 
patients are not allergic to animals or have a fear associated 
with a certain pet. It also designates where the pet therapy is 
to take place. 

Owners selected to participate in the program are screened 
and their pets receive an added benefit of a full examination by 
the base veterinary corps officer. 

"The command Red Cross volunteers are responsible for 
orienting pet owners and training them as hospital volunteers, " 
remarked Senello. 

The interaction between the pet, the pet owner and patient is 
holistic medicine in practice and promotes well-being on the 
ward . 

Medical literature is filled with examples of pet visitation 
lowering blood pressure, alleviating loneliness and decreased 
length of stay and use of pain medication. 

"We are proud to incorporate this form of therapy at our 
command and the pets and volunteers are a welcome addition to 
the naval hospital," said Capt . Elaine Holmes, Naval Hospital 
Great Lakes commanding officer. 


Headline: Virtual Naval Hospital receives knowledge award 
From Naval Medical Information Management Center 

BETHESDA, Md. - The Virtual Naval Hospital (VNH) website was 
awarded the Department of Navy Knowledge Sharing Award during 
the opening ceremony of the Department of Navy Knowlegde Fair 
2000 held at National Navy Medical Center August 1st. 

"This award is evidence of an effective partnership and a 
successful deliverable to the Navy from a dedicated team of 
champions at the University of Iowa College of Medicine and 
Bureau of Medicine and Surgery with Naval Medical Information 
Management Center project support," said Capt. Richard S. 
Bakalar, head of the naval telemedicine business office. 

VNH is a partnership between Navy Medicine and the University 
of Iowa College of Medicine. The goal of the VNH is to create 
and maintain a digital library, a medical reference tool for 
primary care providers and a health promotion tool for Sailors 
and Marines worldwide. On-line since 1997, VNH provides 
assistance as a medical planning tool for medical, humanitarian 
and combat missions by sharing knowledge across the Navy. 

The 80 most common medical problems and 25 health promotion 
topics were used for the baseline needs assessment and 
foundation for the design of VNH. This information along with 
supporting medical information from subject matter experts was 
digitized and organized into a problem-based, user-friendly 
format accessible from the Internet and on a CD-ROM. 

Since then, VNH has been revised, expanded and enhanced on a 
regular basis . Today, the VNH is managed by Naval Medical 

Information Management Center and hosted from a server on the 
University of Iowa campus . 

Since its inception there has been a six-fold increase in the 
number of users visiting the website per month, an eight-fold 
increase in pages read, and the medical content has increased 

VNH now has a survey to access its use. To participate in 
the survey go to the following sites to fill out the survey and 
view the results: 1 92 . 18 9 . 23 6 . 7/vnhsurvey/homevnh . html . 
http://192.189.236. 7/vnhsurvey/ re suits /menu . html 


Headline: Navy family medicine program graduates ten, welcomes 

By Judith Robertson, Naval Hospital, Public Affairs Officer 

BREMERTON, Wash. - The Puget Sound Family Medicine Residency 

program, the teaching arm of the Family Practice Department at 

Naval Hospital Bremerton, graduated ten family physicians and 

welcomed six new interns into the ranks recently. 

Guest speaker for the ceremony, retired Navy Capt . Larry 

Johnson, MC, told his audience that although the Navy's Family 

Medicine program is small, their presence is felt throughout the 

world . 

"The Navy employs approximately 450 Family Physicians. One 
third of them are OCONUS, one third are deployed, and one third 
CONUS . No other group of Navy physicians has that record, " 
Johnson said. 

The 30-year veteran of Navy medicine added, "your training is 
strenuous, but second to none. If you are assigned with a new 
civilian FP grad, you will find out that your knowledge and 
skill sets will be significantly greater. Not because they are 
not as bright as you, but the quality of the training experience 
in the Navy far exceeds that of your civilian counterparts. The 
reputation you take with you is one of excellence within the 
community and nationwide." 


Headliine: TRICARE question and answer 

Question: Will a pre-existing condition be a factor before 
being accepted into Prime? 

No. Pre-existing conditions will not disqualify you from 
enrolling in Prime. 


Headline: Anthrax question and answer 

Question: Will Reserve component personnel be required to 
take a full series of shots? 

Answer: Yes. Full immunization with anthrax vaccine adsorbed 
requires six doses administered over 18 months to complete the 
primary series. This is the schedule licensed by the Food & 
Drug Administration (FDA) . It is DoD policy to adhere to this 
vaccination schedule. Guardsmen and Reservists with less than 18 
months until separation or retirement from military service will 
be treated as in any other vaccination program that is required 

to prepare them for deployment. They will be required to begin 
the vaccination series unless medically deferred. The services 
will not require completion of the six-shot vaccination series 
for Reserve component members once they leave military service. 


Headline: Healthwatch: Getting the upper hand on "snack 

Everyone has an appetite for certain foods . But when that 
appetite becomes extreme, it's called a craving. People often 
have so many pressures in their lives, and cravings are so easy 
to satisfy, that their intention to avoid fatty or sugary snacks 
is the first healthy habit to surrender. 

It doesn't have to be that way. Here are some tips for 
fighting off those fattening "snack attacks:" 

- Intense cravings can result from mood swings or stress . 
Eating only masks the symptoms. Try discovering what might 
really be pushing you to seek solace in food. Addressing 
that problem might reduce the craving for an unhealthy snack. 

- If you normally crave salty foods, eggs, or meat products, 
avoid alcohol or sweets. One usually leads to the other. 

- Stock the pantry and refrigerator with plain popcorn, 
whole-grain bagels, unsalted pretzels, rice cakes, 
unsweetened fruit juices, fresh fruits and vegetables, plain 
low-fat yogurt, and low-fat, low-sodium cheeses. Use salt 
substitutes, if you need to. 

- Bring a naturally sweet fresh fruit, such as grapes or a 
pear, to work for your break, rather than buying candy from 
vending machine. 

- Choose snacks rich in dietary fiber: fresh fruits with 
edible seeds (berries) or edible skins (apples or preaches), 
raw vegetables, or whole-grain breads or bagels (whole wheat 
or rye) . 

- Watch out for certain kinds of "trail mix" and some 
granolas. They may be laden with sugar and fat but 
advertised as "healthy snacks." Read labels carefully. 

- Bake or buy low-sugar, low-fat, whole-grain bran muffins or 
zucchini bread. They'll zap just about any "snack attack." 

Most of us have come to depend on processed or packaged 
foods, or foods derived from high-fat, high-cholesterol animal 
products rather than grains, fresh vegetables and fruits, and 
legumes (beans, peas and lentils) . It's a hard legacy to 
escape, especially when snacking. But armed with the assurance 
of improved health, you can remedy the "snack attacks" and snack 
smart . 


Comments about and ideas for MEDNEWS are welcome. Story 
submissions are encouraged. Contact MEDNEWS editor, at email:; telephone 202-762-3218, (DSN) 762, or 
fax 202-762-3224.